Vehicle assembly at Barcelona and Indonesia to end as Nissan pursues a 20% drop in production capacity

Nissan CEO Makoto Uchida announced a major restructuring of manufacturing operations today as part of the OEM’s four-year transformation plan.

Uchida said: “Our transformation plan aims to ensure steady growth instead of excessive sales expansion. We will now concentrate on our core competencies and enhancing the quality of our business, while maintaining financial discipline and focusing on net revenue per unit to achieve profitability. This coincides with the restoration of a culture defined by “Nissan-ness” for a new era.”

Under the restructuring, Nissan plans to trim its manufacturing base and shrink its model lineup to pursue major cost reductions.

Over the next four years, Nissan aims to recoup billions of yen addressing fixed costs and reducing global production capacity from 7.2 million to 5.4 million vehicles.

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Outlining the production overhaul, Nissan CEO Makoto Uchida confirmed that vehicle assembly in Barcelona and Indonesia will end as the OEM looks to improve its factory utilisation to from 70% to above 80%. 

Uchida said: “We considered various measures for the Barcelona plant. Although it was a very difficult decision, we intend to close the plant and we’ll begin preparations and discussions.”

In Europe and ASEAN respectively, Sunderland and Thailand will become Nissan’s regional production bases.

In North America, Uchida added, Nissan is consolidating models by segment and platform to improve efficiency.

“We are also investing in intelligent plants that will enable reforms in working styles and flexible production. Nissan is also adapting its production practices to changing business needs through methods such as reducing raw materials and other costs.”

Over the next three years, Nissan will reduce its global model portfolio from 69 to less than 55. It plans to focus on a pool of more profitable core models, launching at higher frequency and bringing the average age across the portfolio down to under 4 years.

COO Ashwani Gupta, confirmed that Nissan is cooperating with Alliance partner Mitsubishi on common powertrains, transmissions and structural modules between the Nissan Navara and Mitsubishi Triton pick-ups. 

Uchida stressed that Nissan intends to play to its strengths: ”You can expect to see more Nissan crossovers, SUVs, sedans, sports cars, and full-electric and electrified vehicles. Our engineering, design and product teams will also continue to innovate and design vehicles that combine next-generation electrification and autonomous technologies.”